Seventy seven years ago today war ended in the Pacific, with Japan giving their unconditional surrender to the Allies, officially bringing an end to the Second World War.
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel Matt Keogh said nearly one million Australians served during the war and around 40,000 did not return home to their families.
“On Victory in the Pacific Day, we pause to commemorate the more than 17,000 Australians who lost their lives in the war against Japan,” Minister Keogh said.
“We remember our valiant efforts on the Australian home front, in Malaya, Singapore, Papua and New Guinea, Borneo and elsewhere in the south west Pacific across those three years of war.”
The war in Europe had ended three months earlier, but Japan fought on until the USA dropped atomic bombs on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the Soviet Union declared war on Japan.
“The threat of invasion seemed very real,” Minister Keogh said. “It was a time when Australians worked hard and pulled together to defend our country.”
“On this day, I encourage all Australians to remember the courage and sacrifice of those who served during the Second World War.”